After more than 20 years, posts here will now only be occasional (see why) for big events such as Tenerife Carnaval, so please "Like" and follow our Facebook Page because that's where to see future updates.

The Immaculate Conception in Tenerife

Nuestra Señora de La Concepción (Church of the Immaculate Conception)
Image: rene boulay, CC BY-SA 3.0

Today, 8 December is a public holiday for the Inmaculada Concepción (Immaculate Conception). Many people will "bridge" together this holiday with that for Constitution Day on 6 December and take a few days off. It's also customary in Spain to put up Christmas decorations (in homes) on the weekend closest to 8 December.

Since the 14th century there have been references in Spain to brotherhoods created in honour of the Immaculate Conception. The oldest, in Gerona, dates from 1330. 

In the 16th century this fervor was revitalized with a huge number of brotherhoods established under the dedication of the Pure and Clean Concepción de María; brotherhoods devoted to charitable work and social assistance. The Franciscans were very faithful to the belief in the Immaculate Conception, and contributed to its spread throughout the world. The feast of the Immaculate Conception was a feast of keeping in all the kingdoms of the Spanish Empire, since 1644.

It was declared a feast of keeping in the entire Church since 1708 by order of Pope Clement XI. In 1760, in response to a plea from Charles III, Pope Clement XIII issued the bull Quantum Ornamenti, which has since proclaimed the Immaculate the main patron of Spain and the Indies. In 1771 the same king consecrated the newly created order of Carlos III to the Immaculate Conception and a year later Clement XIV recognized this order, identified by the colours white and blue.

Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception has been Patroness of the Infantry since 1892 by Royal Order of Queen María Cristina de Habsburgo-Lorena. This patronage has its origin in the Miracle of Empel (8 Dec 1585), a great Spanish victory in the wars in Flanders. She is also patron of the Ecclesiastical Corps of the Army; the General Staff, Legal Corps, and the Military Pharmacy. The Official Associations of Pharmacists and the Faculties of Pharmacy also have her as their patron.

The first temple dedicated to the Immaculate Conception in Spain was the Monastery of San Jerónimo de Granada

Iglesia de la Concepción (San Cristóbal de La Laguna) 
Image: Raimo Nieminen Some rights reserved

In the Canary Islands, the mother parish of the island of Tenerife is under the invocation of the Immaculate Conception in the city of San Cristóbal de La Laguna, of which she is the Mayor and Co-Patron of the city and Patron of the Spanish Red Cross. This also had the honour of being the second image of the Immaculate to be canonically crowned in Spain, after that in Villalpando (Zamora).

The most important temple in the city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, is dedicated to the Immaculate Conception (Iglesia Matriz de la Concepción).

Immaculate Conception Church in la Orotava, Tenerife El fosilmaníaco, CC BY-SA 3.0

In La Orotava (Tenerife) is the Iglesia de la Concepción, the mother temple of this town, which is the best example of the Baroque in the Canary Islands. In Los Realejos (also in Tenerife) is the Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de la Concepción.

In Agaete, Gran Canaria, she is the patron saint of the town. On the island of Fuerteventura, she is historical patron of the island and in the municipality of Betancuria, the Matriz de la Concepción Church, is the mother parish of the island. She is also the patron saint of the island of El Hierro, the westernmost of the Canary Islands and in Valverde is the Church of Nuestra Señora de la Concepción.

Tenerife Land of Eternal Christmas

Sunbathing SantaDesert Island ChristmasScuba Diving SantaTropical Santa
Santa's Having a Whale of a TimeSurfing SantaWaterski SantaCamel Rodeo Santa
With a wide range of products in each design, click the pics (above) to see the full selections.